Design Anthropology in Participatory Design: From Ethnography to Anthropological Critique (Oct 2014, Namibia)

Date: 6 October 2014
Location: PDC2014, Windhoek, Namibia
Deadline for submission of position papers: UPDATED 28 July 2014

Workshop at PDC2014.

In this workshop we explore the opportunities of ethnography and design anthropology in Participatory Design (PD) as an approach to design in an increasingly global and digital world. Traditionally, ethnography has been used in PD to research real-life contexts and challenges, and as ways to involve people in defining user-needs and design opportunities. As the boundaries between physical, digital and hybrid spaces and experiences become increasingly blurred, so do conventional distinctions between research and design. The workshop invites participants in the field to explore opportunities of using design anthropology as a holistic and critical approach to societal challenges, and a way for anthropologists and designers to engage in design that extends beyond the empirical.

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Global Conference On Mobility Futures (Sep 2013, Lancaster UK)

Dates: 4-6 September 2013
Location: Lancaster University, UK
Deadline for submissions: 12 April 2013

To ethnographers and designers

As part of celebrations of the tenth anniversary of the Centre for Mobilities Research (CeMoRe) at Lancaster University, we are pleased to announce the Global Conference on Mobility Futures, September 4-6th, 2013, at Lancaster University, UK and invite contributions.

Over the past ten years the work of CeMoRe and others have helped to ‘mobilise’ the social and human sciences and developed innovative analyses of economic, social, technological, political, policy and design transformations.

The ‘Global Conference on Mobility Futures’ will reflect this work and provide a forum for the presentation of cutting edge research from across the social sciences that reflects back on, explores the present and looks towards future mobilities.

Studio Studies: Ethnographies of Creative Production – Open panel at the EASST/4S Meeting (Oct 2012, Copenhagen)

Dates: 17-20 October 2012
Location: Copenhagen
Deadline for submission of abstracts: 11 March 2012

Organizers: Alex Wilkie and Ignacio Farias

Given the importance placed on ‘creativity’, ‘creative economy’ and ‘creative industry’ in both national and international policy contexts, it is surprising that understanding of creativity-in-action remains largely underdeveloped. What is more surprising is that creativity is commonly associated with (unobservable) cognitive activity that can only be stimulated by the environment, which has led many scholars to see social networks and/or urban environments as the main sources for creativity. What gets lost here are the concrete practices through which the ‘new’ comes into being in different disciplines and in different economic sectors. In foregrounding the view of creativity as a local process distributed amongst heterogeneous actors this panel seeks to explore and compare accounts of sites of creative practice. Our insight is that the studio is a defining feature of creative production. Thus, building on workplace and laboratory studies this panel aims to draw together emerging ethnographic work on creative practice and in doing so define and investigate a lacuna in the STS imagination. To address the studio, as a key site of creative production, we welcome presentations based on in-depth case studies that focus on key ‘creative industries’, including the arts, crafts and cultural and creative industries. Accordingly, this panel invites comparison of different creative models and practices, thereby acknowledging the diversity of in-situ creative practice as well as providing a survey of different creative disciplines.
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MPCA 2011 Conf: Ethnography and Popular Culture (Oct 2011, Milwaukee)

Dates: October 14-16, 2011
Location: Milwaukee, Wisconsin, Hilton Milwaukee City Center
Deadline for submissions: April 30, 2011

The Ethnography & Popular Culture area of the MPCA invites proposals (or abstracts) for papers on any aspect of the intersection of ethnography and popular culture.  All topics, approaches, and perspectives related to ethnography and popular culture are welcome.  For example, papers may address: ethnographic methods in popular culture studies; popular culture in ethnographic research; and/or the relationship between ethnographic studies and popular culture studies.  Papers may include presentations of ethnographic research involving popular culture, and/or address theoretical, methodological, or historical issues related to ethnography and popular culture.

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Ethnographic Fiction & Speculative Design Workshop (Jun 2011, Brisbane)

CFP: Ethnographic Fiction & Speculative Design Workshop
Location: Brisbane, Australia
Dates: 29 June – 2 July 2011
Deadline for position papers: 1 April 2011

Ethnographic Fiction and Speculative Design is a full-day workshop at the 5th International Conference on Communities & Technologies–C&T 2011, in Brisbane, Australia, 29 June-2 July, 2011.

This full-day workshop aims to explore how grounded ethnographic and action research methods can be transformed into fictional and speculative designs that provide people the kinds of experiences and tools that can lead to direct community action in the development and implementation of new pervasive technologies.

Please email submissions to

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EPIC 2010: 道 Dō / The Way of Ethnography (Aug 2010, Tokyo)

When: August 29-September 1, 2010
Where: Midtown Conference Center, Tokyo, Japan
Papers: Abstract submission deadline March 14, 2010
Workshops: Proposal submission deadline April 22, 2010
Artifacts: Proposal submission deadline May 2, 2010
Pecha Kucha: Proposal submission deadline May 9, 2010

The start of this new decade marks an exciting new departure for EPIC, as we move beyond North America and Europe for the first time to Tokyo.

EPIC is the premier international forum bringing together artists, computer scientists, designers, social scientists, marketers, academics and advertisers – and others! – to discuss recent developments and future advances around ethnographic praxis.

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